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Four-Pointer: Previewing the Denver Nuggets

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The Nuggets are heading to the lottery but they still give the Mavericks Hell, or War is Hell.

France, 1916.

The Earth stutters from the vibrations of the artillery landing in the distance. Dirt falls from the trench walls and into the sour muck that the soldiers wade through. The rats clamor for shelter. Above, the sky shifts from a pale blue smattered with the sun's morning rays to one that is sullied with dust, haze and smoke. The top of the hour draws nearer.

Ladders are placed at preordained intervals along the trench wall. Men make themselves ready. Of course, one cannot fully prepare for what awaits. The air grows thick as hearts race into the necks of men. Uncertainty looms.

Bayonets are fixed with quivering hands as the hour draws closer. The artillery fire that once seemed distant grows louder, more focused. Then it fades and ceases. Whistles sound. Ladders are mounted and men climb over the top.

The only remaining sound is the cackle of machine gun fire. It mocks the living.

***

Obviously, the Mavericks are not facing a fate so dire as they host the Nuggets. Sometimes it just feels like it.

What has Denver done lately?

The Nuggets have won five of their last eight games including wins against the Heat and Clippers. Despite being a team gunning for the draft lottery, Denver is scrappy and doesn't go down easy. However, both Ty Lawson and Wilson Chandler missed Wednesday's game against the Pistons. This could signal the Nuggets' willingness to tank for the remainder of the season.

Denver has suffered various injuries throughout the season, they did, however, acquire Aaron Brooks at the trade deadline. In the 15 games he has played for the team, Brooks has averaged 10.9 points, 2.6 rebounds, and 4.9 assists. Not too shabby.

Oh, and they still have Manimal. Yeah.

Which team stat might determine the game?

Transition points. Like, OH MY GOD! My main dawg, Corey Brewer, shredded the Mavs on Wednesday. He just trotted down court and beat the entire Mavs' defense for like three transition buckets in a row. That was one man. DENVER IS A WHOLE TEAM! THAT'S WHAT THEY DO! Uggh.

Which Mavericks player might be due for a big game?

Umm, Dirk. Yeah, he missed all seven of his three-point attempts against the Timberwolves, it took him 27 shots to get 27 points, and he missed the game winning shot. So, Dirk should be ready to have a better night. He owes it to himself.

What do the Mavs need to do to be successful against the Nuggets?

PLAY SOME #&@$ing defense!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! /sigh

Oh, and don't get mowed down.